The Heart You Gave Me


Noelle Natividad, Staff Writer

And so the story ended, as love emerged victorious.

If I were to describe the way in which our world turns, I would tell you this. Someone once told me that there is no being on Earth devoid of love, and that the beginning and end of each life comes and goes with heartbeats. This is the rhythm of life.

The strongest love there is said to be exists between a parent and their child. This is the first love to be felt when we come into this world, and it comes in the unconditional, tireless, and sleepless nights that we can barely even remember. When it was just you, huddled in the arms of two people that will continue to love you through every obnoxious and seemingly ridiculous phase of growing up. It will go all too soon, I will tell you, and it seems as though those family Sundays came and went with ease until you find yourself here.

I remember that for the longest time, I was inconsolably attached to my family. I never wanted to be without my mom, my dad, and my younger sister, because I knew that I didn’t need to navigate anything too complex with them. I existed in a space that was completely and wonderfully safe, where love and compassion and friendship wasn’t defined by how much they liked me. This is your spot in the world until you grow older and find that you can be just as frank in the frightening world of people because you liked yourself just as you were.

Family is your first love, and, in all of life’s irony, you are your second.

It is one of the rare and undiscovered truths that before you can find it in your heart to love someone else, you need to fall in love with yourself first, and only then you have the capacity to reach out. This third kind of love is said to be the most difficult to navigate, while also becoming the most worthwhile. It becomes something much more than simply an emotion, but rather a state of being. You are love, and thus the cycle continues.

In our lives, we will inevitably score a mark on each other’s hearts. In nearly a century and with seven billion beings roaming the Earth, there won’t always be the storybook ending we’d prefer. Just as there is darkness to every light, hurt will find us along the way. Love is trusting another human being with something very dear to us, but we do just as our name implies, we make grand and awe-inspiring mistakes. This is life, but I claim to you, that love is the epitome of all human emotion. It is there in hate, in resentment, and in greed, in all of the places where we’d all imagine it was lost. The human capacity and purpose for living revolves around the giving of ourselves to others, and in compassion and caring for others, we inevitably leave them with a unique piece of ourselves. The very heart of life rests within heartbeats as we come and go, scoring wondrous marks on each other’s lives, spreading love wherever we wander.

Photo courtesy of PARENTING-BLOG.NET